Rashmi Bhardwaj | Blog,BUZZ

Many a times companies planning for setting up IP telephony and collaboration solution come across the ask whether to go for CUCM (Cisco Unified Call Manager) solution or CME (Call Manager Express) solution. A general understanding is CUCM is for big Enterprise having thousands of users while CME caters to SMB sector companies which have upto 300 to 400 phone requirement. Below table shares the comparison between both the solution types and how they vary –



Cisco Unified Call Manager system extends enterprise telephony features and functions to packet telephony network devices such as IP phones, media processing devices, voice-over-IP (VoIP) gateways, and multimedia applications. Additional data, voice, and video services such as unified messaging, multimedia conferencing, collaborative contact centers, and interactive multimedia response systems interact through Cisco Call Manager open telephony application program interface (API).

Related- CUCM Region Settings in VOIP Calls


Features and Capabilities –

  • Reliability
  • Lower cost of ownership
  • Interoperability and standards support
  • Scalability for up to 40,000 users, extensible to 80,000 users

Call manager solution helps –

  • Extend video capabilities to employees through a single, unified communications infrastructure from the desktop to telepresence rooms
  • Simplify voice systems with unified communications to cut costs and dramatically simplify provisioning and maintenance
  • Build productivity with comprehensive unified communications to help workers communicate and work more effectively
  • Enable mobility with embedded unified mobility software capabilities to keep workers productive wherever they are, with any content type, on any device
  • Improve collaboration -simply click to begin an IM session, initiate a phone call, or easily start a video-conferencing call


Cisco Call Manager Express is a feature-rich entry-level IP telephony solution that is integrated directly into Cisco IOS software. Cisco Call Manager Express allows small business customers and autonomous small enterprise branch offices to deploy voice, data, and IP telephony on a single platform for small offices, thereby streamlining operations and lowering network costs.

Even branch offices within the same enterprise can have different needs and requirements when it comes to unified communications and collaboration. Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express delivers on this need by providing localized call control, mobility, and conferencing alongside data applications on Cisco Integrated Services Routers (ISRs).

Because the solution is Cisco IOS software-based, Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express is easy to configure and can be tailored to ndividual site needs

Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express is –

  • Affordable – Inexpensive to add to existing Cisco ISRs,saves real-estate by integrating multiple services on a single platform.
  • Customizable – Enjoy configuration flexibility to meet each branch’s needs and requirements.
  • Scalable – Implement a smooth and fast migration from legacy telephony with an expandable and flexible architecture
  • Simple to deploy – Keep your current architecture and minimize change for employees through its PBX and system features.

Customer benefits include –

  • Increased productivity – Feature rich and customizable to meet branch or industry vertical needs.
  • Low total cost of ownership – Reduce your capital and operations costs
  • Investment protection – Scale from a distributed to centralized architecture using Cisco Unified Communications Manager and Cisco Survivable Remote Site Telephony with no added cost.


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